Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama defends decision to allow free concert
‘There is no other way now but to rise up and move forward’
CEBU CITY, Philippines—Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama defended his decision to allow concerts and other gatherings despite health concerns being raised.
In a press conference on Monday, March 28, 2022, Rama said allowing crowd-gathering events is part of his administration’s plans to revive the city’s economy.
“There is no other way now but to rise up and move forward… The declaration I made was already there. Gawas na ang tanan, abli na ang tanan. Amping lang ug pag amping lang,” said Rama.
The mayor also stood by his earlier decision to allow other crowd-gathering events in the future.
“As we have declared before, our road to recovery will proceed without let-up. The prize of freedom can only be felt through our shared responsibility,” Rama pointed out.
“While government could now work to mitigate and guide the people, the practice of freedom we allowed for a month now has become a personal choice, one’s own responsibility,” he added.
The “Arat na Cebu” was the first concert held in Cebu City two years since the COVID-19 pandemic forced the government to temporarily ban gatherings to curb the spread of the infection.
The event, which took place at the Cebu City Sports Center last Saturday, March 26, drew around 100,000 individuals, most of whom were young adults.
While there were reports of concertgoers and police officers who sustained injuries due to the thick crowd, organizers and police said the concert was “overall peaceful”.
Members of the health sector, on the other hand, described the event as worrisome.
The Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH-7) earlier said that it may turn out to become a superspreader event.
When asked for his response on DOH-7’s statements, Rama, begged off to give any.
Cebu City has been under Alert Level 1 since March 15, wherein gathering such as concerts are allowed.
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